One of Austin's most prominent chefs has departed from one of the city's most important restaurant groups. Director of Culinary Operations Philip Speer has resigned from the Uchi Restaurant Group according to The Statesman's Matthew Odam. Speer, who was also the group's executive pastry chef, was at the forefront of the team's newest project, pizzeria and bake shop St. Philip. Both The Statesman and The Chronicle filed on the restaurant this week.
Speer was arrested for a DWI this fall which caused a natural gas leak. After the arrest, he took a leave of absence before returning in what The Statesman calls an "undefined role." The Uchi Restaurant Group provided the following statement to Eater about Speer's resignation:
Philip Speer has officially resigned from Uchi Restaurant Group. We understand his decision and are grateful for his innumerable contributions and dedication over the last ten years and we wish him success for his future endeavors.
Update: Speer tells The Chronicle he is taking time off to focus on "my health, my sobriety, and my relationship with my family."